So where was I? Oh yeah praising my dear brother. He’d probably say I was only doing it because he was doing me a favour, but the truth was if he wasn’t doing what he was doing I would have done it myself. So does that really deserve praise, or was I simply praising him for being such a good brother?
I’ll leave you to decide that, just don’t let Matthew’s words sway you into thinking something that isn’t really there!
Ok, so a little recap. We were rescuing Coby and Lars, two French tourists, from the bog hole they had gotten their Nissan Patrol stuck in. They’d ignored warning signs not to cross where they had, they had lied to me when I asked them on the phone if they were stuck in the big hole but besides those two things they were relatively nice blokes. And I’m not just saying that because they paid me really well for the rescue up front, before Matthew even got his arse wet. I think they were feeling guilty about the lie and the ignorance of warning signs and they figured they needed to buy my help, they didn’t but I didn’t tell them that.
As I’ve said before Matthew is no dummy when it comes to being in the outback, he’s capable of using all the gear I own and he’s as much a stickler for safety as I am. However in my back yard, in my Beast, he never steps on my feet and tells me how to do things. He offers suggestions, he offers ideas and most importantly he offers to help and that’s exactly what he was doing with his arse in the water.
The rescue was pretty straight forward providing a few common sense elements were in place. There was no way I was going to put any of the Beast in that water because as I think I told you before even she would get bogged down in that shitty quagmire that makes the base of that little hole. Instead I would attach the winch rope from the front of the Beast to the recovery point on the Patrol.
Coby assured me that the recovery point was both over manufactured and secured properly because the Patrol had been bought second hand from a bloke in Darwin who regularly took it four wheel driving. By what I could see out of the water the Patrol did indeed look set up well so I took Coby at his word.
The voyaging duo had of course driven onto the big hole which meant that the front wheels would have pushed themselves deeper into the mud and created a wall at the front of the big baggy off road tyres. Pulling it out from behind would have been easier had they driven in and just stopped but I could tell from the way that the vehicle was sitting relatively level that they had dug themselves deeper by trying to rock themselves out with both forward and reverse gears. Lars also confirmed that was that they did because they’d seen it on one of those stupid outback four wheel drive touring shows.
Oh if you haven’t seen these shows I recommenced you don’t, especially not if you want to actually travel in places like the Australian Outback. These numpties posing as experts take their four wheel drives out in the bush and supposedly teach people how to drive in the bush, what they don’t tell you in that ninety percent of the time they get stuck because they are doing something stupid. I have lost count of the number of those types of shows I have not appeared in because the ‘experts’ didn’t want me to be seen on camera pulling their arse out of a bog they shouldn’t have gotten into in the first place, and should have been able to pull themselves out of with all their shiny new gear that has just been unboxed.
Anyway back to my story, I’ll tell you about the TV crew another time.
Because the angle between where I would be parked on the bank and the bogged Patrol was so sharp I knew I would in part be lifting the front end of the Patrol as well as pulling it out, and that was exactly what I wanted. I trusted this type of pull more from the front end than I did from the back end because of the recovery point I knew Patrols had.
I had been fully prepared to get wet myself, to wade out into the water, then swim when I had to and duck dive under the water to attach the hook to the recovery point. And if I had done that I was more than happy to let Matthew stay dry and feed the winch cable out from the bullbar as I did so. But I didn’t even get a chance to do it, as soon as the Beast was in position he took the winch hook and walked toward the water’s edge.
I did ask him if he wanted me to do it, it was after all my rescue and I was the one being paid, but he politely refused and said he was happy to do it, even after our silly discussion about his lost love from the band.
We were pretty safe from crocodiles in that part of the river and providing Matthew didn’t stand in the one spot for too long he wouldn’t sink in the quagmire, but I kept watch from the water’s edge nonetheless.
I also let him do the talking, let him tell me what he was feeling and doing, not because he wanted or needed to give me a step by step guide but because if he was talking I could hear any change in his voice if he thought things were getting out of hand. It was another one of those tried and tested routines we got ourselves into without any effort because we knew each other so well.
“Ok, I’m going under!” Matthew said after a moments breath when he reached the nearly submerged bonnet of the Patrol.
I gave him the thumbs up.
Previous Outback Rescue story here.